COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – The South Carolina Chamber of Commerce supports allowing ex-cons to erase more minor offenses from their criminal records to make it easier for them to get a job.
Chamber CEO Ted Pitts told The Associated Press that business leaders back the idea of helping ex-cons “become productive, taxpaying citizens,” since criminal records can prevent job applicants from being called in for an interview or even filling out an application.
Legislation expanding expungement eligibility is up for debate Tuesday in a House subcommittee.
Pitts says the chamber opposes expunging crimes involving violence, sexual assault or dishonesty. But he says removing minor offenses such as marijuana possession will help people improve their lives while helping businesses fill openings.
The chamber also wants businesses to be protected from potential lawsuits involving expunged records.